In preparation for COP26, Index on Censorship invites you to reflect on the role of indigenous activists in climate activism.
As we prepare for challenging and necessary conversations at COP26, Index on Censorship brings attention to the cases of people whose voices are too easily forgotten in climate change debates. Index sheds light on the challenges of speaking up about climate change.
Join us for the launch of the new Index on Censorship magazine, A Climate of Fear. The conversation will be chaired by Index on Censorship acting editor Martin Bright with a focus on indigenous activists in Ecuador fighting for environmental justice and those who tell their stories.
Steven Donziger is a US lawyer who was part of an international legal team that obtained a multi-billion-dollar pollution judgment designed to remedy decades of deliberate toxic dumping by global oil company Chevron on indigenous ancestral lands in Ecuador.
Jimmy Piaguaje is an indigenous defender and filmmaker of Siekopai nationality from the community of Siekoya Remolino in Ecuador’s northeastern Amazon region. He is the co-founder of the Sëra Foundation, a grassroots organisation created by a group of young people from Siekoya Remolino to preserve their ancestral knowledge via audiovisual techniques and education. His latest documentary, about fighting covid in the Amazon with ancestral medicine, was published by the New Yorker.
Bethany Pitts is a writer and activist who has been working with indigenous communities in Ecuador since 2013, especially those defending the Amazon from oil exploitation. She is the author of the Moon Guide to Ecuador & The Galapagos Islands, the first internationally published guidebook on Ecuador with a focus on ethical travel. It was while Bethany was in the Amazon researching for her book in 2018 that she met Jimmy Piaguaje. Since then, she has been working to support the Sëra Foundation.
Martin Bright has over 30 years of experience as a journalist, working for the Observer, the Guardian and the New Statesman among others. He has worked on several high-profile freedom of expression cases often involving government secrecy. He broke the story of Iraq War whistleblower Katharine Gun, which was made into the movie Official Secrets (2019) starring Keira Knightley. He is the founder of Creative Society, a youth employment charity set up in response to the economic crash of 2008.